OMAHA, Neb — Brady Tygart first experienced the College World Series in the stands, as a 13-year-old young baseball player.
“With his arms out going, ‘I can’t wait ‘till I play here’,” said Josh Tygart, Brady’s father. “As a dad, you’re, you know, maybe one day, but now it’s like surreal.”
It's surreal because Tygart is now back in Omaha.
Not in the stands, but as a player.
“From day one: ‘I’m going to play there. I’m going to do what it takes,” Josh said. “And he did.”
Brady returns to Omaha not just with any team, but with the Razorbacks, the team his parents grew up cheering for as native Arkansans.
“The thing that sealed it was when we got to Arkansas, he goes ‘I feel like I’m home,'” Josh said.
“Yeah, we were secretly rooting for him, pulling for him to be a Hog,” said Belinda Tygart, Brady’s mother. “But he had to make that decision. It’s his life.”
And so far, it’s turned out to be a good decision.
Brady’s earned Freshman All-American honors after leading the Razorbacks in saves with eight, and ranking fourth in strikeouts with 51.
“I’m really proud just because we hear about his work ethic,” Josh said. “All these kids are so talented, the separator is going to be how hard you work at the end of the day. So when I hear about how hard he works, that’s what makes me happy.”
And as for Brady’s mom, she’s happy to see the person he is after the final out of a game is recorded.
“Fans have come up to me or messaged me and said, ‘thank you to you soon for taking the time to talk with my child after the game and sign the ball’,” Belinda said. “He remembers what it’s like to that little boy looking up to somebody, and getting an autograph. He’s happy to pass that on.”
Brady’s parents remember when he was a boy too, with his arms open in Omaha. And can’t wait to see him experience the College World Series, not from the stands, but from the mound.
“He hasn’t played yet, but watching the team, and he’s part of the team, is still so awesome,” Josh said. “If he gets into the game, I’ll probably pass out. It’s gonna be nuts. I’ll get chills.”